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How to build a cold storage warehouse?

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The perishable supply chain is quickly changing resulting in increased competition and demands. Despite the challenges of manufacturing, warehousing, and distribution, technology has led to higher productivity and then higher demand for cold storage warehouses.

Manufacturers and companies are continually finding ways to cut costs while improving infrastructure.  Although there are a number of rentals available, many companies prefer to construct their freezing storage warehouses.

So, how to build a cold storage warehouse? 

There are surely costs, and if things are not well planned, they usually increase. Therefore, nothing could be better than determining the needs and creating a building project, design, and money that are perfectly sufficient.

In today’s post, we’ll go over everything you need to know about building a cold storage warehouse.

what is cold storage warehouse

what is cold storage warehouse

Review Your Suppliers Needed to Build a Cold Storage Warehouse

A cold storage building’s design must take into account a number of factors. Each of these parts will have an impact on performance and must, therefore, be the best fit for the project.

Size and Space

You must consider the long-term and decide what you want the project to accomplish in the ensuing 10 to 15 years. Additionally, be aware of the expense and the number of goods you will need to retain.

The ROI (or return on investment) that the fully constructed warehouse will offer is the most important consideration.

Furthermore, decide on the right facility size, how the merchandise will be housed, and how you will reach the shelves. Pick between bits and pallets, and consider a reliable cooling system.

Make sure that any rooms in your warehouse that serve distinct functions are properly partitioned. When planning the layout, remember that you could desire to grow the warehouse in the future.

Warehouse’s Size and Space for cold storage warehouse

Warehouse’s Size and Space for cold storage warehouse

Quality of Food

Throughout the stages of food manufacturing, packaging, and distribution, food quality needs to be maintained. Although they cost more, locations close to transportation hubs are desired.

Consumption of energy

Cold storage facilities may spend hundreds of dollars on energy each month. These costs can be cut by installing under-floor heating systems, considering the temperatures of other rooms, insulating the space, and using energy-efficient lighting systems.


A typical system of refrigeration has a condenser, evaporator, compressor, variable frequency drive, as well as motor. In each of these areas, return and demand on investment must always be balanced.

Controls for refrigerators

Automation boosts productivity while using less energy. Data processing, market research, and reporting in real-time are also useful to engineers. This enables the quick implementation of necessary changes, ensuring that almost all systems consistently deliver their optimal performance.

Electrical Utilities

A major financial issue might result from a power outage. As a result, while designing an electrical system, factors like operating voltages, standby generation, supply dependability, and the best places for electrical rooms where power is transferred should all be taken into account.

Insulation and roofing

Insulation and seal panels must be sufficient in cold storage warehouses. To deflect the sun’s rays, floors, walls, and roofs should be thick enough and coated in reflective materials.

Insulation and roofing for cold storage warehouse

Insulation and roofing for cold storage warehouse

Suspended Ceilings

It is necessary to construct suspended ceilings in well-considered places near drainage systems that can terminate water accumulations. The materials must be strong enough to support the weight of the building.

Supports for Structures

No supports or columns should block any operational activities while we develop the structure.


Evaporators should always be positioned to decrease airflow and restrict the production of snow.

Both refrigeration fans which do not operate when people are around and quick roller doors that provide a cool environment for the items while maintaining a warm place for the staff are valued features.

Flooring Systems

Concrete is frequently used for floors, and it must be flat and without cracks. It must be post-tensioned in order to prevent the necessity for expansion joints. It can be proposed to use vapor barriers as well as underfloor heating systems to keep the required insulation in place.


We recommend designing the cold storage infrastructure to make the most of the available staff and storage space. To enable them to work comfortably and effectively, a number of conveniences should be made available to them.


Some businesses can willingly construct a cold storage warehouse for you; however, before hiring them, ensure they are the right fit.

Choose a service that has the necessary experience, has completed a project similar to yours, and is aware of any potential problems that could arise during the phases of planning and undertaking.

To find out more about the businesses, talk to industry insiders, get recommendations, browse online reviews, and go to trade exhibitions. The terms you find can then be narrowed down.

Calculation the cost you need 

Freezers are just one part of a cold storage warehouse; there are many other parts that need to work together flawlessly for them to function properly.

HVAC System

To create cold air, a device that uses anhydrous ammonia is employed. The following considerations, which have higher prices, should be made in light of the price of these refrigerants.

You will need to use a different material since ammonia and copper pipes do not mix well, which might increase the overall cost. Additionally, because ammonia is toxic to people, all on-duty staff will need additional training.

It is also required to implement crucial security standards and to outfit personnel with the right safety gear.


A specific temperature band must be kept for cold storage, which can only be done with effective insulation. You must be cautious to make sure that the warehouse is completely tightly sealed before installing.

Warehouse’s Insulation for cold storage warehouse

Warehouse’s Insulation for cold storage warehouse

The load on the cooling systems will rise if there is leakage, which will have an impact on power costs. Another issue that needs to be addressed is the danger of failure that this poses to HVAC systems.

Numerous materials can be used to provide insulation; however, the overall effectiveness and R figures will vary. Polyurethane foams are less expensive than fiberglass as a replacement.

The R-value determines how well insulation resists temperature transfer; greater R values increase upfront expenses but also enhance insulation, which reduces long-term costs.

The flammability of different insulation materials and any potential environmental damage they can cause are further considerations. Several insulating materials are used in numerous cold storage warehouses to strike a compromise between R-value, environmental effects, fire hazards, and cost.

Here are some typical insulating materials:

  • Fiberglass: R values 2.9 – 3.8 per inch
  • Mineral Wool: R values 2.8 – 3.5 per inch
  • Cellulose: R values 3.1 – 3.7 per inch
  • Polyurethane Foam: R values of 6.3
  • Polystyrene: Expanded (R-value of 4) and extruded (R-value of 5.5)

Energy Supply and Backup

A cold storage warehouse uses a lot of energy, the majority of which is used by the illumination and HVAC systems. Other components may require electricity, such as automated doors, security monitors, and response systems. All of this counts toward operating costs, which can climb dramatically if certain standards are not met.

Moreover, it would be necessary to offer a backup power source on a continuous basis, which would raise expenses even more. This backup power should, at the very least, be adequate to keep the right temperatures for perishable goods.


Cold storage warehouse prices may be constructed using a variety of materials and techniques, according to the project’s objectives. Some of these come with pretty clear qualifications right away.

The owners are quite specific about everything they desire, even the construction materials and drain diameter. Before consulting their construction professionals for layout, stakeholders spell forth their expectations while keeping in mind other projects.

Energy Saving Elements

Even though energy-saving components are more expensive up front, they end up saving money. The ROI and efficiency improvements of Lighting systems, automated mechanical systems, as well as other similar components, are higher. Compressors and refrigeration units can also save you money by operating more efficiently.

Cost of Electricity

Electricity expenditures for fans and air conditioning are $2,300 annually. 10% is allocated for additional hardware and needs. Increased bills result from higher summertime temperatures. From August on, the monthly running costs fall as the quantity of energy utilized declines.

Cost of Electricity for cold storage warehouse

Cost of Electricity for cold storage warehouse

For the summer months of June and July, the monthly average cost is about $450. They decrease to a little over $150 in August. From September to February, the monthly average cost is less than $100.

Built Above or Below Ground

A typical above-ground structure is made of produced aluminum panels with an R-value of 34 and modular components. In order to save money on concrete, insulation, and wood, HVAC units are frequently installed inside, next to a metal pole barn.

The increased heat conduction gain will result in higher electrical expenditures. Such a unit costs around $33,300 in total, whereas a basement apartment starts off costing over $50,000.

Sum Up

Any business or nation’s food supply and distribution network depends heavily on cold storage warehouses. We have reviewed everything you require and give consideration to know how to build a cold storage warehouse.

This post can assist you in paying attention to even the tiniest details and free up a customer to focus fully on operations and logistics for a successful market launch.

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